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Chief Administrative Secretaries assume office despite court order

The government on March 27, 2023, appeared to ignore a court order by allowing Chief Administrative Secretaries (CAS) to assume office.

A few days ago, the High Court in Nairobi stopped 50 Chief Administrative Secretaries (CASs) from assuming office or receiving any salary until a case filed by the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) is heard and determined.

The court’s order was issued hours after the CASs took the oath of their offices at State House in a ceremony run by Head of Public Service Felix Koskei in the presence of President William Ruto, First Lady Rachel, Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua and Chief Prime Secretary Musalia Mudavadi.

According to Justice Hedwig Ongudi, the new appointees will only assume office after a petition by LSK challenging their legality is settled.

However, the government appeared to ignore the ruling and moved on to assign CASs duties in different departments.

On Monday, Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua held a meeting with the three new CASs attached to his office.

“I met the new Chief Administrative Secretaries (CASs) attached to my Office this morning. Ms Ann Wanjiku Mwangi, Mr Edwin Sudi Wandabusi and Mr Nicholas Ngabiya Rioba reported to Office on Thursday immediately after they were sworn in at State House, Nairobi,” DP Gachagua said.

The DP said that the CASs will bring the much-needed diverse experience, professional expertise, energy, and focus to his office, which is critical in the effective and efficient execution of their duty.

The Interior Cabinet Secretary Professor Kithure Kindiki also assigned the three CASs assigned to his ministry to various departments.

Prof Kindiki assigned the State Department for Internal Security and National Administration to the former Narok Governor Mr Samuel Tunai.

State Department for Immigration and Citizen Services has been assigned to former Nominated MP Millicent Omanga, and the State Department for Correctional Services assigned to Amb Mohamud Saleh.

However, the CS stated that the effective delivery of services, and the allocation of responsibilities are subject to the outcome of the ongoing judicial processes.

The Judiciary has meanwhile it did not preside over the swearing-in of the CASs amidst a pending case.

“The Judiciary has no role in the swearing-in of chief administrative secretaries,” the statement read.

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